Friday, January 24, 2014

Our Sleep Number is NOT Zero

As briefly mentioned in my last blog, Vince and I have a Sleep Number Bed.  

It was not purchased brand new at the Sleep Number Bed Store as we would have immediately developed insomnia upon learning the price of a brand new Sleep Number Bed. 

And that would have completely defeated the purpose.

Instead, we bought it second-hand from someone’s hair stylist who seemed suspiciously happy to get rid of it for a few bucks. I could only wonder why.

Nevertheless, we agreed to purchase it and she and her husband brought it over and set it up. This was a good thing because they kept returning to their SUV to fetch more pieces/parts and I wasn’t sure if they were constructing a bed or perhaps building a rocket ship in our bedroom. I fretted about moving ever again as we’d have no clue how to set up the thing.

Up until this point, I was under the impression that beds consisted of two major parts – a mattress and a box spring.  Okay, three if you include a frame. And let’s not complicate matters by discussing headboards and footboards and such.  We’re talking basics here.

My heretofore habit was to go to Mattress Mart, test a few different mattresses to find the most comfortable one at a price I could afford and then purchase the set. A day or two later, a couple burly men would knock on my door carrying the new mattress and box spring, which they would set in the bed frame.  And they would remove my old mattress and box spring and take them to the Old Mattress and Box Spring graveyard. All the while wearing those little paper booties so as not to sully my pristine carpet.  No muss, no fuss.

So initially I was skeptical of this Sleep Number Bed.

But once we discovered what our actual Sleep Numbers were (mine is 45 and Vince’s is 40), we pretty much never wanted to get out of our comfy bed.  Soon we began to scoff at plain old mattresses and box springs.  There was no adjustment ability there. No real comfort.

Heck, it was getting to the point where I could barely convince Vince to go on vacation since no other bed was as comfortable as his own.

This honeymoon phase with our Sleep Number Bed lasted approximately three years. Until recently, anyway, when it decided to spring a leak.

I knew we had a problem when I woke up early in the morning and blearily glanced over at Vince. Only I had to look down because he was lying in a pit about six inches lower than I was. He could barely climb up out of the abyss to get out of bed. And he was not happy. 

This was when I discovered that Sleep Number Beds are basically fancy air mattresses surrounded by and covered with heavy pieces of foam. There are hoses that attach to the mattress bladder that can be filled to capacity or the air can be released until the mattress is at the proper softness level.  Vince was sleeping (and I use the term loosely as very little sleeping was actually occurring) on a completely flat air mattress.

So we (and by “we” I mean Vince) pulled the bed apart and tried reconnecting things to fix the problem.  I heard a lot of grumbling. And the terms “bladders” and “connectors” and “O-rings” kept cropping up.  I think he even briefly considered using duct tape.

Those pesky bladders and connectors and O-rings. Always causing problems.

Eventually, the bed was reassembled and pushed back against the wall.  We crossed our fingers and went to bed.

Sometime during the middle of the night I woke up to use the bathroom and when I came out, Vince was sleeping on my side of the bed. How he managed to roll up out of the abyss and move to my side without making any noise and alerting me in the next room, I’ll never know. But he did. Sleep deprivation is not a pretty thing. 

For either of us.

The next morning, we downed multiple cups of black coffee and furtively counted the bags under the other's eyes. We wondered if there is such a thing as an O-ring repair specialist. Otherwise, we knew we'd have to ditch the fancy Sleep Number Bed and go back to Mattress Mart and pick out a plain old mattress and box spring. 

Because the big sinkhole in our mattress is not working.  After all, neither of has a Sleep Number of Zero. We may as well camp out on the floor. 

But Vince is nothing if not persistent and he's going to give the do-it-yourself repair thing another try. Only this time he is planning to employ a little duct tape. I guess we'll test the theory that duct tape fixes everything.

And we'll be keeping our fingers crossed. Again.  

But if that doesn't work and we have to make a trip to Mattress Mart, I hope the burly men in the paper booties will take our Sleep Number Bed and all those pieces/parts to the Old Mattress and Box Spring graveyard. They'll need the big truck. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Ya Gotta Laugh


According to my trusty iPhone, it’s a frigid 3°F outside. My trusty desktop computer, on the other hand, says that it’s only 1°F. Hmmm. Those artificial brains – always competing.  But since I’m trying to think optimistically, I’m choosing to believe my iPhone.

Yeah, like two measly little degrees makes any sort of difference when we’re down to single digits.  Either way, it’s I-can’t-feel-my-toes-anymore kind of weather.

And I think I’m fighting off a cold.  I’ve been desperately popping Airborne tablets and these little gummy bear-type Sunkist fruit chews (“Each package contains 100% of your daily requirements of Vitamin C!”). I don’t know why I’m doing either of these things. I’m not convinced they work. But I also sometimes think that succumbing to illness is a mental thing. And I’m trying not to be mental about it. Ha.

So I’ve decided to concentrate on things that make me smile or laugh to get through the rest of my day.

Like my new tissue holder. I’ve named him Mortimer Snodgrass. Don’t ask me why – the name just fits. Isn’t he adorable?  I couldn’t resist buying him for myself when I was Christmas shopping.  In fact, I bought Mortimer’s twin brother for my father-in-law for Christmas. Don’t ask me why I did that either – it’s not like my father-in-law has ever shown any interest whatsoever in owning a tissue dispenser with a face on it in which the tissues come out of the nose.

But Mortimer just spoke to me. And he makes me smile every time I catch a glimpse of him when I turn to get a tissue. So even if I AM catching a cold, maybe it won’t be as bad if I’m smiling every time I blow my nose.

The other thing that makes me laugh whenever I think about it is something that happened the other day.  Vince decided that our comforter and the top pad on our Sleep Number bed needed to be washed, but they were too bulky to clean in our washing machine at home. So he and his son trekked over to the Laundromat down the street.  Meanwhile, I was at home doing other chores.

I routinely pile the clean laundry on our bed to fold it and put it away. This is Twinklebelle’s cue to jump on the bed to roll around in the warm, fresh laundry. She’s either getting her scent on all those clean clothes – or she thinks it’s her personal heated blanket until the warmth from the dryer dissipates, anyway.

Either way, I’m not crazy about this little habit of hers because then I have to take a lint brush to all those clean clothes so nobody will think I’m one of those crazy cat ladies who wears more stray cat hairs on her clothes than is on the cat.

On Sunday, though, since Vince and his son took the top pad to the cleaners, all that was on top of the bed were these foam baffles.  Not a problem when you’re merely placing laundry on it to fold it and put it away – but evidently a major problem when you’re a cat.

Even though I admonished her not to jump on the bed per usual, Twinks just gave me the I-am-a-cat-and-will-do-what-I-want look and jumped anyway. Per usual.

But she had never encountered foam baffles before. And she Did. Not. Like. Them.



She immediately popped up off of them where she hovered in mid-air for a second with a panicked look on her little kitty face.

But gravity being what it is forced her to land back on the baffles.

And she immediately popped up in the air again. A bunch of images flashed in my brain just then. Like those little balls in the Powerball drawing that pop up into the chute to make some lucky stiff a multimillionaire. And kernels of corn in an air popper when they finally start popping.  And a kid on a trampoline who doesn’t like it and moves as quickly (and awkwardly) as possible toward the edge of the trampoline to get off. 

Well, Twinks was all of those things.  She kept popping up and down on those baffles moving as fast as a feline can possibly move toward the edge of the bed, where she finally jumped down to the floor and landed with a big whump!

I had never seen anything so funny and I was practically rolling on the floor laughing. I mean, I felt sort of bad that the poor cat was traumatized by the foam baffles, but I was still snickering as I called after her, “Are you – hahahahaha – okay, Twinks?”

Before the question was even completely out of my mouth, Twinks had streaked out of the bedroom and was cowering behind the couch in the living room.

The good news is that she will probably never again jump up on that bed and roll around in the newly cleaned laundry. So we’ll save big money on lint rollers.  And maybe – just maybe – nobody will refer to me as that “crazy cat lady.”

Hey, an opportunity to laugh with abandon like a kid – and a chance to save a little money. Score.

So I think I should be okay today. Especially if I don’t go outside and test the I-can’t-feel-my-toes-anymore theory. And I’m happy to stay indoors. After all, I have Mortimer to keep me company.  Which is good because Twinks is still not speaking to me.